Kota Kinabalu: The Sabah Badminton Association is confident of retaining the gold medal won by its women team in the Malaysia Games (Sukma) 2009 at the coming sports meet in Melaka this year.
Its president, Datuk Maijol Mahap said this was based on the team's preparation, adding that the team would be represented by the same players who played at the Sukma in Terengganu two years ago.
"So, we hope to defend the gold for the women team. As for the men team, we hope for the best...at least to the semi-final," he told Bernama here.
For the women team, Sabah is banking its hope on Sannatasah Saniru, who helped the national women team to win the gold in the Sea Games in Laos. She is also the first Sabahan to compete in the Uber Cup recently.
"I believe she will give a good performance in the coming Sukma," said Maijol.
He said the team was also hoping on former national player Amelia Alicia Anscelly, as well as national players, Florah Ng Siew Fong and Marylen Ng Paou Leng, to strengthen the Sabah women team which also comprised Yvonne Ong Jing Er, Soong Fie Cho, Tan Sue Lin and Adrina Aysha Anscelly.
For the men's team, Sabah will be represented by national player Vountus Saniru, Cheong Khung Tze, Lim Yu Fu, Nurfadli Mohd Said, Chong Kein Hiung, Harun Burahima, Asry Abas and Calvin Ong.
Maijol said that the Sabah women and men's teams would hold friendly matches with a few clubs in Kuala Lumpur as part of their "warming up" events to Sukma.
"They include the Coronar Sports Club led by former national player in the Thomas Cup 1992, Cheah Soon Kit," he added.